I believe the cat is pretty much out of the bag on this one, so I thought I'd post a bit of early images and information about it.
This aircraft actually spurred the idea about doing a "Then and Now" set of Mustangs, and became the first project of those started, but one thing led to another, and "Cripes A' Mighty" ended up being finished before this project could be.
For a little bit of background:
This P-51D, an early-production P-51D-20-NA, is quite unique in that it is one of a very select few surviving Mustangs that actually saw combat use in WWII. 44-63864 was built early enough in the war, that upon arrival to England it was assigned to the 78th FG 83rd FS at Duxford. From there, the aircraft became the personal mount of Lt. Hubert "Bill" Davis. Lt. Hubert named the aircraft after the "1944 Race Horse of the Year", a filly named Twilight Tear. The aircraft was credited with shooting down three enemey aircraft - 1 Me-109 on March 2nd, 1945, and 2 Me-109's on March 19th, 1945 (67-years ago today!). Following the end of WWII, the aircraft, which remained in Europe, was sold to Sweden, where it became RSwAF Fv26158 F16 coded Red D, and later Green K. Following service in the Swedish AF, the aircraft was obtained by the Israeli AF. The aircraft was then later sold to William Lear Jr. who flew it from Tel Aviv to Athens, and then to Geneva, with the aircraft registered then as N251L in 1960. In the summer of 1963, the aircraft was to be ferried accross the Atlantic to the U.S., by pilot Roger Gaston Arnoult, but Arnoult, having never flown a P-51 before, crashed on landing at Reykjavik, Iceland. The aircraft was almost sold for scrap, but the remains were rescued by Petur Jonsson and Michael Valdimarsson in 1986. The remains were then purchased by Ron Fagen, of Granite Falls, MN, who sent the project to Tri State Aviation for a rebuild to completely stock and airworthy condition. The aircraft flew again for the first time since 1963, in April of 2011. Final detailing was conducted through a joint-effort by Fagen's Warhawks Inc. restoration company, and the then newly founded Aircorps Aviation restoration company. The aircraft was then showcased at the 2011 EAA Oshkosh Airventure air show, where it won the WWII Grand Champion award for the authenticity and complexity of the restoration.
This webpage is dedicated to this aircraft on the Fagen Fighters website: http://www.warhawksinc.com/twilight_tear.html
Here are a collection of images of the aircraft on display at Oshkosh last summer: http://s1103.photobucket.com/albums/... Oshkosh 2011/
Provided some amazing access to this aircraft, as well as some exclusive photographs, the project for FSX was born. Work on the aircraft as it is now, in its restored condition, is very near to being completed, and work on the depiction of the aircraft as it was during WWII is just beginning. Like the "Cripes A' Mighty, Then & Now", this project will yet again introduce a bit of a different cockpit look, completely accurate for the specific production-model type and in-field modifications (which were reproduced when the aircraft was restored).
First off for images, here are some of the exterior of the restored "Twilight Tear", very near complete. I'll also be posting some cockpit screens soon - it has avionics that are unlike those incorporated into my past restored-Mustangs, and reflect what the real aircraft actually does use (which is more sparse, and even less intrusive on the originality/complete stock look of the cockpit, and the avionics are easily removeable). It is extremely authentic inside this Mustang, and it is the only one in existence with a full-proper early-production P-51D-20-NA cockpit configuration. The model exterior is tuned so that the markings could be fully-accurately reproduced, without any short-cuts.